May 9, 2023 at 8:13 p.m.

Dennis A. Heidgerken

Dennis A. Heidgerken
Dennis A. Heidgerken


Dennis A. Heidgerken, 85, of Freeport, passed away peacefully May 4, 2023, at the St. Cloud Hospital in St. Cloud.

A Mass of Christian Burial was May 9 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Freeport with the Rev. Dan Walz officiating. Interment followed in the parish cemetery with military honors by the Melrose Veterans Honor Guard.

Dennis Allen Heidgerken was born Aug. 16, 1937, in Freeport, to George and Marie (Middendorf) Heidgerken. He served in the United States Army from 1956-59. After the military, Dennis owned and operated the future Charlie’s Café and co-owned Charlie’s Den in Freeport with his brother, Charlie. On Oct. 20, 1962, he married Rita Blommel at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Freeport. The couple resided in St. Louis Park, and in 1970 they moved to Freeport. Throughout his working career, Dennis had various jobs in sales. He had a gift of gab and was relatable to people.

He was a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church, the Freeport Lions and former mayor of Freeport. Dennis was the Guiding Lion that started the St. Rosa Lions Chapter. He was also a former member of the Albany Legion and later joined the Melrose VFW. In his later years, Dennis traveled across the U.S. and Canada to see every Major League Baseball stadium with his brothers. He was a lifelong Detroit Tiger baseball fan as well as a lifelong baseball, basketball and football fan, following the Big 10 teams. His favorite pastimes were playing cards and playing fast pitch softball with his brothers.

Survivors include his four children, Craig Heidgerken of Freeport, Todd Heidgerken of Morgan, Lee Heidgerken of Minneapolis and Jill (Mike) Nielsen of Waconia; grandchildren Benjamin and Lucinda Heidgerken and Daniel and Madelyn Nielsen; brothers and sisters John (Louise) Heidgerken of Minnetonka, Peter (Marilyn) Heidgerken of Freeport, Paul (Mary Ann) Heidgerken of Albany, Bud (Ann) Heidgerken of Freeport, Mary (Ted) Hinnenkamp of Albert Lea, and Carol (Glen) Setterholm of New Ulm; and sister-in-law Dorine Heidgerken of Richmond.

Dennis was preceded in death by his wife, Rita Heidgerken Oct. 14, 2005; brothers and sister in-law Jim Heidgerken, Charlie (Shirley) Heidgerken, and George, Jr.; and sister and brother-in-law Irene (Jim) Obermiller.

Arrangements were made with Patton-Schad Funeral & Cremation Services of Freeport.




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